It was blustery, rainy and it was cold – a typical late Winter day Saturday on the coast. But to the delight and surprise of the Toledo Food Pantry, more than a hundred runners showed up to pay an entry fee to raise money to help feed Toledo’s hungry families. And there’s a lot of them; 156 families a month according to a pantry official. Funding and surplus food have been shrinking while the need for food has been rising. With unemployment checks running out, many families are desperate. So the Toledo Food Pantry, like so many others, are having to turn to their individual communities to find creative ways for residents to chip in and help fill the gap. And from the looks of the pantry’s Shamrock 5K Run, good and generous hearts abound in and around Toledo – each and every one making a big difference.
At the end of the event, sponsors provided food, drink, commemorative shirts and other accessories courtesy of Food Share, Oregon Coast Bank, Bank of the West, Pig Feathers Barbecue/Twisted Snout, Mo’s Restaurants, Yaquina Bay Oysters, Pepsi distributor Bigfoot Beverages, Toledo Rotary, Copeland Lumber, Port of Toledo and the trash was handled by Dahl. Shirts for the runners from Advertee’s. Other sponsors helped as well. They even had live music for the finishers provided by the James and Julz Kasner Band.
We’re all going to be seeing more of these kinds of fundraisers on behalf of our local food pantries because Federal surplus food supplies have been cut IN HALF and other assistance agencies have had their budgets cut as well, absolutely requiring each community pull together to help ensure that no family in their area goes to bed hungry.